We are now into the fourth week of lockdown and I am sure many of you cannot wait until this is all over so you can get back to some sort of normality.
The longer this goes on the more we might find it hard to stay motivated, so here are some ways to help keep your motivation through this time.
- I’m sure many of you already have noticed that your training volume will either drop or you will have had to change your routine totally from what you are used to. Not everyone has access to gym equipment at home and will struggle to maintain the level of training they are used to. This is ok, just focus on what you have and make the most of the opportunity to train in ways you are maybe not used to.
- Identify opportunities. Use this time to assess your weaknesses and set new goals to work on them. You can use this time to work on the aspects of your training that you never seem to have time to address. This could be more mobility, bodyweight exercises, aerobic conditioning or even anaerobic conditioning.
- Define the type of athlete you want to be at the end of this. Think about what would make you happy when you look back at this time and put it into action.
- Keep a schedule and daily routines that work for you. Try to train at the same time each day but don’t get upset if this doesn’t always go to plan. if possible use this extra time to focus on some relaxation or meditation. Do some breathing drills or try some yoga. Things you don’t usually do or have time for but will benefit you as an athlete and prepare you for when you get back to the gym.
- Reflect on the future and set yourself some new long term goals. This lockdown has thrown a spanner in the works with competitions and who knows when the next time you get to compete will be. Maybe during this time, you have decided to try something new when this is over. Plan what your training will look like when you get back to the gym, set your goals and a pathway to achieve them. Talk to your coach and together plan ahead.
- Practice your sport mentally. use this time to read up on and practice visualisation. Maybe due to the lack of space or equipment, there are exercises you can’t perform. Visualise yourself doing them, break them down into stages and then visualise yourself doing the full exercise. There is a lot of evidence to support the use of visualisation in sport and this can help with when you get back to the gym and start training these exercises again.
- Keep in touch with your training partners and coaches. Talk to each other and be supportive during this time. Discuss training ideas and how you are coping during this period, help keep each other motivated.
- Lastly, use this time positively. Work on weaknesses, plan your goals for the future, Look after yourself not only physically but also mentally, use this time to look into your nutrition or research ways to change your training. You can also do things that aren’t related to your sport, read more, learn a language, do an online course. these are some ways to help, especially as we have no idea how long this may last.